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Grubauer healthy, ready to play if NHL season resumes

Avalanche goalie cycling, working with weights in Denver during pause

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Grubauer's 11th career shutout

OTT@COL: Grubauer makes 34 saves in shutout victory

Philipp Grubauer stopped all 34 shots he faced, to record his second shutout of the season as the Avalanche defeated the Senators, 3-0

  • 02:52 •

Philipp Grubauer said he has recovered from a lower-body injury and will be ready to play for the Colorado Avalanche if the NHL season resumes.

The goalie was injured Feb. 15 during a collision with Avalanche defenseman Ian Cole while Los Angeles Kings forward Austin Wagner was driving to the net.

Grubauer was said to be out indefinitely after the injury occurred. He was 18-12-4 with a 2.63 goals-against average and .916 save percentage in 36 games when the NHL season was paused March 12 due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus.

"Shortly before the lockdown came, I was ready to go, so it hurts even a little more," Grubauer said Monday. "At [that] time we had many injuries, many important players were sidelined, so the pause came at a good time, otherwise we would have started into the players with [our American Hockey League] team. We hope that we can continue soon. Everybody wants to play hockey."

Grubauer, who remained in Denver during the quarantine, said he is doing what he can to stay in shape and that he's confident he can quickly regain his reflexes if the season resumes.

Colorado (42-20-8) trails the St. Louis Blues by two points for first place in the Central Division. The Avalanche went 12-2-1 from Feb. 4-March 2, and Grubauer's replacement, Pavel Francouz, started 12 of 13 games before the pause and went 8-2-2 with a 2.37 GAA and .919 save percentage.

"My hand-eye coordination has reached the zero point; you don't get 500 or 600 shots fired in your direction each day," Grubauer said. "If you don't have that for 2-3 weeks, then you are losing it, but I think that it'll come back fast. You can work with a tennis ball and a tennis racket, hit the wall and put some shots on you, but there's not much [else] that you can do. It's difficult at the moment.

"Before the lockdown came, I picked up some weights out of the gym and built up something in my garage. The Rocky Mountains are one reason why I stayed here in Denver. I bought a racing bike and I am cycling about 100 miles per day as well as doing a workout with weights. I'd love to go hiking in the mountains as well, but you have to watch out that there are not too many people out there, which wouldn't be too good. I prefer cycling."

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